ANTI-SOCIAL Networking?

Is Facebook trying to become an ANTI-SOCIAL network?

When I visited Facebook this morning, the site kept kicking me out. After logging back in three or four times, I was routed to a page warning me about friend requests. It seems someone I’d recently sent a friend request to – I wasn’t told who, of course – has reported me for sending a friend request to someone I didn’t already know personally. Facebook basically warned me that if I “continue to do so” I “may be blocked” from sending any friend requests at all.

My main reason for using Facebook is to network and stay in closer touch with my fans. Now, it seems that if I run across someone with common interests, say a comic book store, I’m unable to send them a friend request until I’ve travelled, in person, hundreds of miles and gone into the store and introduced myself to the owners of that shop in person. Only that way will I truly be able to tell Facebook that, yes indeed, I do know that person personally.

This is one of the many reasons why I delayed joining Facebook for so long. I actually preferred MySpace’s “lawless frontier” feel to the overly-moderated, Big-Brother-is-always-watching feel of Facebook. Sadly, MySpace now seems to want to be Facebook, too, and MySpace has made changes there that have turned that site into a slow-running mess. What happened to the days when social networks were actually fun and enjoyable? Now, they seem, to me at least, to be more frustrations and headaches.

I WANT connections on these sites. As I said, I use these sites to network. If anyone wants to connect with me, be it on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc., please send me a request. It’s very rare – almost unheard of – for me to deny a connect request on any social networking site. If Facebook, or any other site, asks if you know me personally, please say “yes” and send me the request. I want to USE the social part of “social networking”. These sites allow me closer connections with my fans. As a writer, I both want and need that.

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